Saturday, July 23, 2016


When I started telling people I was pregnant, I realized I was both forming and joining a new community: the community of moms. I loved it--women whose children were adults to those who had smaller ones were eager to welcome me, sharing their experiences, and reminiscing about what it was like for them to be a new mom or to raise a kid.

This notion of community is one that has driven much of my life. One reason we decided Boise would be a good fit was the potential for community--I saw how I'd be friends with so many people from my department and that there would many others who would let us be part of their home. Now that we've been here a year, this is definitely the case.

Yet, joining new communities doesn't mean I have to leave the old ones behind. We are making new friends here, but we are also still rooted in our community in Fayetteville. We spent most of June there, celebrating weddings, our new baby, and enjoying the friendships we've had for a long time.

I love being part of a number of communities, be they academic, family, or friend-based. These communities are notable for the mutual support they provide and the joy they bring. And now we're jumping into a new community of parents, and I'm excited to see what we discover.

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Times are a'changin'

My last post was all about resolutions. Little did I know at the same time (well, I did know, but it was very early) that I would be going through a major life change--that I would be having a baby this year.

Now it's July, and I'm in my 28th week (the start of the third trimester). Pregnancy has been fascinating as a physical and emotional (and feminist!) experience, and I'm enjoying this time for sure. Currently, I'm feeling my baby move around (s/he seems to respond more and more to noise, touch, etc--was stretching along with me in prenatal yoga this morning!). I'm also at the point where it seems my body changes at an almost daily rate--the week-to-week growth is definitely noticeable.

2015 (and 2016) have been times of change: I started my first post-graduate school job in 2015, which I love, in a new city in the West, which I also enjoy. While I definitely miss my AR friends and family, we are making new friends and connections in Boise. After nearly a year here, it's been a positive change, and the baby is adding yet another good--but BIG!--change to our lives. We are now considering buying a house just to really throw a wrench in things (ha!).

I'll talk more about some of my thoughts on pregnancy, pending motherhood, academia, exercise, feminism, and more in future posts.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

no resolution

I opted to skip new year's resolutions. I never really have--I'm always thinking about ways I can be better, happier, healthier, etc. But this year...I'm just over it. I accomplished so much in 2015, yet expended too much energy fussing about the weight I gained, finding myself in a place where I would resolve to eat better and workout more, only to fail again and again.

Not. Fun.

So my resolution, one I marked down while I was enjoying my barre3 studio time in Fayetteville, was to be kind. Be kind to myself, be kind to others. This sense of kindness means that I won't beat myself up. It means I'll focus on nourishing myself not punishing myself, seeking out connections with people I enjoy, and best of all, stop ignoring all of my successes and seeing only what I perceive as failure.

Thus far, this no-resolution resolution has served me well. I feel happier in my own skin and more content--and, it turns out, I'm nourishing my body with delicious food and running and friendship. And if I can maintain this focus in the midst of the next semester, then I know I'll be onto something far more important that a resolution that fades after the decorations get put away and the glitter gets swept into the trash.

Monday, January 18, 2016

hey, it's 2016!

January is the traditional time of reflection and contemplation, and I realized I'd done some of that in my head but not out loud. So here I go--

2015 was a wild whirlwind of things for me. I graduated, got a job, moved across the country, started the job, and concluded my first semester on the tenure track. Crazy! And now that I've looked at my teaching evals, I see that it wasn't too bad in terms of teaching either.

We spent the remainder of the old year and the start of the new back in Arkansas. Oh, how lovely it was to visit old friends, see family, and generally relax with people who love us dearly. I got to spend time with a friend planning her wedding, which was a treat and an honor.

Back in Boise, we're finding a niche for ourselves as well. We have friends, and my goal for the new year was to quit hiding from my pretty awesome running group--while I am often tired when it's time for the group runs, I realized that maybe I was avoiding them because I was feeling intimidated or something, which was just silly. I ran with them on Thursday and Saturday, and they were happy to see me and to see L.

We've also made a lot of friends within my department. In fact, I had the chance to go on a writing retreat in December and to have people in our new community over for Thanksgiving dinner. The last few months have felt like we do in fact belong here. And it doesn't hurt that it's such a great place to live.

While we were back in Fayetteville, people kept asking me how things were or how I liked my new home. It felt artificial, a bit, to gush about how awesome things are but 1.) I'm a pretty positive person, and when I feel content and fulfilled, I tend to ignore the ugly things and 2.) Things really are great. Ultimately, I didn't want to come off as trite in response to the question, but I stand by the answer. Things are great. And I think they'll continue also being challenging, interesting, exciting, and maybe sometimes mundane. And that's just fine with me.